Graduate Studies at UM Music
Perform, teach, and participate in research and outreach as a UM Music graduate student. Gain classroom teaching experience. Perform in chamber groups and take leadership roles in ensembles. Conduct research important to you, guided by experienced faculty. Focus on solo performance, and reach the next level of musicianship.
With a number of different degree paths, UM Music offers graduate students the freedom to focus on their music-related goals.
For general information on any of the master degrees, contact Dr. Rhonda Hackworth, Graduate Coordinator in Music.
Masters in Music
- Instrumental Music Performance (contact Michael Rowlett)
- Piano Music Performance (contact Ian Hominick)
- Collaborative Piano (contact Ian Hominick)
- Vocal Music Performance (contact Bradley Robinson)
- Music Education (contact Rhonda Hackworth)
- Choral Conducting (contact Don Trott)
- Ethnomusicology (contact George Worlasi Kwasi Dor)
- Musicology (contact Thomas Peattie)
- Music Theory (contact John Latartara)
PhD in Music with emphasis in Music Education
- The PhD is designed for students who wish to pursue advanced study in preparation for university teaching, research, and other leadership roles in music education.
How to apply: Master in Music
*Notice: Due to interruptions in testing availability because of COVID-19, the requirement for GRE test scores for admission to graduate degrees in
Music Education, Musicology, Ethnomusicology, and Music Theory has been temporarily suspended. Please contact Dr. Rhonda Hackworth with any specific questions about graduate programs or requirements.
- Apply online to the University of Mississippi Graduate School. There is a $50.00 application fee.
- Ask your school to send official transcripts to the UM Graduate School. UM will not accept transcripts that you send yourself, and they will not accept them if you send them to the music department, a music department faculty member, or the Graduate Coordinator. Your institution must send them directly to the UM Graduate School.
- You must have at least a 3.00 GPA on your undergraduate degree for full admission.
- The following requirement is temporarily suspended due to Covid-related interruptions in testing, but since it is normally a requirement, it is stated here for those who may plan to apply in the future: If you seek an emphasis in music education, ethnomusicology, musicology, or music theory, you must take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). The GRE tests verbal ability, quantitative knowledge, and writing ability; it is not a music exam. For full admission, the following minimum scores are required: verbal exam, 141; quantitative exam, 142; writing exam, 3.5. Be sure to have your scores sent directly to the University of Mississippi Graduate School by the GRE.
- If your emphasis will be music performance or choral conducting, the GRE is not required, but you must set up an audition. Please contact the degree coordinator in your area, listed above, to set up an audition. This requirement may be waived if you’ve previously auditioned for UM faculty, or if you received your undergraduate degree from UM Music.
- Applicants for the MM in musicology, ethnomusicology, music theory, and music education are required to submit a writing sample. You will upload this along with your application to the Graduate School. If you have specific questions about the writing sample, please contact the faculty member listed below for your area. Specific instructions:
- Applicants for the MM in Musicology are required to submit a writing sample such as a term paper from an undergraduate music history course or a newly prepared paper on a musical topic.
- Applicants for the MM in Ethnomusicology are required to submit an undergraduate term paper in world music or a culture-related course, or a chapter from the student’s final written project.
- Applicants for the MM in Music Theory are required to submit an analytical music theory writing sample that includes graphs and charts. This can be a paper from an undergraduate course or a newly prepared paper.
- Applicants for the MM in Music Education are required to submit a writing sample such as a term or research paper from an undergraduate music course or a newly prepared paper on a musical topic.
- Incoming instrumental students from schools other than the University of Mississippi, except for those in performance who have previously auditioned, are required to play their instrument for the faculty.
- Once all application requirements are fulfilled, your application review begins.
How to apply: Ph.D. in Music
The University of Mississippi offers a Ph.D. in Music with an emphasis in music education. In order to be considered for admission, please complete the following:
- Apply to the University of Mississippi Graduate School.
- Have a masters degree in music or music education from an accredited institution. Ask your school(s) to send official transcripts directly to the UM Graduate School. The Graduate SChool will not accept transcripts that you send yourself, and will not accept them if they are sent to the music department, a music department faculty member, or the Graduate Coordinator.
- Have at least a 3.00 GPA.
- The following requirement is temporarily suspended due to Covid-related interruptions in testing, but since it is usually a requirement, it is stated here for those who may plan to apply in the future. Meet or exceed the following scores on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE):
- Quantitative portion: a minimum of 146
- Verbal portion: a minimum of 142
- Writing portion: a minimum of 3.5
- Submit the following to Rhonda Hackworth:
- a journal article review (article information will be sent to you) and score a minimum of 3.5 on the review.
- a video of you teaching students. We suggest two 10-minute examples showing your best teaching. This should not be a performance, but rather should show you teaching and engaging students. Be sure that we get quality camera work so that we can see and hear you interact with your students.
- evidence of at least 3 years of full-time teaching in music or other relevant experience in music.
- a portfolio that includes: a career narrative, a discussion of your goals, programs of your students’ performances, and a video of your own performances.
All incoming graduate students are required to take diagnostic exams in music history/literature and music theory. The exams are offered the week before the start of school in the fall and spring semesters and during the first days of the first summer term. Students are required to take all exams at their first enrollment. Those students who neglect to take the exams at the required time will be reclassified to conditional admission status.
Students who do not pass the music theory exam will be required to take MUS 552, Music Theory Practicum, in addition to the other music theory requirements for their degree. MUS 552 may not be counted as a theory elective.
Students who fail the music history/literature exam will be required to take one or two additional music history courses depending upon their score.
Exams are graded promptly and students are informed of the outcome quickly so that they can schedule classes accordingly. A record of the exam grade and additional course requirements are kept in the student’s file.
*Notice: Due to interruptions in testing availability because of COVID-19,
the requirement for GRE test scores for admission to graduate degrees in
Music Education, Musicology, Ethnomusicology, and Music Theory has been temporarily suspended.
Please contact Dr. Rhonda Hackworth with any specific questions about graduate programs or requirements.
In addition to scholarships, the University of Mississippi Department of Music offers paid assistantships to graduate students.
Generally, assistantships pay $5,400 per nine-month school year, waive the out-of-state tuition portion, and waive 75% of the in-state tuition portion. Assistantship assignments are based on your interests and strengths and the needs of the department. You must apply for an assistantship to be considered.
- Download and complete the application form: UM Music Graduate Assistantship Application form
- Email the completed application and three letters of recommendation to Rhonda Hackworth.
- Applications submitted by April 1st will receive priority consideration. After April 1st, assistantships will be awarded only if positions are still available.